Andrej Holm

Berlin Politician Fired over Stasi Past

Andrej Holm
Andrej Holm worked for the Stasi in the period immediately before the fall of the Berlin Wall in 1989. Source: Rainer Jensen, DPA

Berlin mayor Michael Müller announced the dismissal of a senior official who worked in the past for the Stasi, the former East Germany’s dreaded secret police, German media reported.

Andrej Holm, a 46-year old sociologist, was appointed deputy minister for urban development and housing in Berlin last month after a left-wing coalition took power in the capital. The ministry is run by the Left Party which has roots in the East’s communist party. Mr. Holm is politically independent but supported by that party.

As revelations about Mr. Holm’s past emerged, he faced increasing resistance from members of Mr. Müller’s Social Democrats and the Green Party, the other two partners in the coalition government.

Mr. Holm had admitted that he received training by the East German secret police while still a teenager. However, newspaper Der Tagesspiegel, a sister publication of Handelsblatt, revealed that he concealed the extent of his involvement.

The son of a Stasi officer, Mr. Holm volunteered to join the agency at the age of 14 and four years later enrolled in its school as an officer cadet. He worked for the Stasi in the period immediately before the fall of the Berlin Wall in 1989.

“His interviews and statements with respect to this question show that he is not sufficiently able to undertake such self-reflection,” Mr. Müller said Saturday, adding that “especially in Berlin, which was the epitome of a divided city, there must be no doubt about the work to overcome the past.”

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